Stop Shovelling Smoke - Give Users a Classic Definition of Mediation

A proposal for a simple, seven-word definition of mediation that can inspire greater understanding of mediation by users.



What is mediation?


Mediation is: Negotiation facilitated by a trusted neutral person.

The role of the neutral - the mediator – is to help those involved sort out their issues and arrive at a consensus.  That might involve helping parties to finalize an agreement, resolve a dispute, develop effective communications, build or improve relationships, or all of these things.  Mediators do not take sides.

Mediation is a confidential process where what was discussed or agreed in private is not disclosed to others without everyone’s agreement.

Where mediation is used to try to avoid or resolve a dispute, and if the mediation does not result in an agreement, the parties can still go to court. Details about what went on at the mediation will not be disclosed or used at a court hearing.

Usually parties share the task of selecting a mediator and the cost of the mediation.


For a more detailed analysis of the definition of mediation, see:

Stop Shovelling Smoke: Give Users a Classic Definition of Mediation





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